For many, the idea of designing and developing a new website is linear. There is a definite starting point where you begin brainstorming design aspects and creating pages along with what is believed to be the finishing point where you take your new site live. What many website owners unfamiliar with the process of owning a new site don’t realize is that taking a site live is just the beginning of a design process that really never ends. Here’s why:
No matter how careful you are when you create your website and no matter what platform you build it on, things are bound to break, lose properties or in general mess up over time. Part of owning and designing a website is to constantly be monitoring your pages to ensure that everything looks the way it should and is still working properly.
Things Can Always Be “Tighter”
You’re almost never going to catch all of the mistakes or minor design flaws when reviewing website comps. Whether it’s because of a lack of time to properly review pages or an inexperienced editing eye, small errors will be found and pointed out to you over time. You should be spending time on a regular basis going through your site with an eye for “tightness” in order to ensure that everything of yours online looks good.
Strategies and Personas Change
Sometimes your business or marketing strategy may change and your website needs to change with it. Changes in buyer personas to fundamental business strategies require edits to both the content and design of your website and its pages. Your website should always reflect your business’ most current strategy and focus because if it doesn’t, your visitors will certainly notice the lack of continuity between your various marketing channels.
Things Go Out Of Style
So we’ve come full circle. I started this post telling you that website design and development isn’t linear and here’s my biggest piece of evidence as to why. No website design is going to stay modern forever and the sooner you realize this, the better. Just think about how websites have evolved over the past decade from static pages to modular sections. Just like almost everything else in business, trends in web design will come and go and it’s up to you as the website owner to realize when your site no longer looks attractive compared to the “latest and greatest”.
Designing and developing a website is not something that takes a few months and then is over nor is it a one-time occurrence. Whether you’re spending your time looking for errors, trying to find things to “tighten up” or just looking to update content or your entire site, web design and development never really ends.